The Blood Type Diet

By RebDee Latest Reply 2015-02-21 14:28:47 -0600
Started 2015-02-16 12:45:05 -0600

I had never heard of this Blood Type Diet until receiving this e-mail today. I would love some comments from my friends at Diabetic Connect.

The Blood Type Diet: An Evidence-Based Review
By Joe Leech, Dietitian | 23,906 views
A diet called The Blood Type Diet has been popular for almost two decades now. Proponents of this diet suggest that your blood type determines which foods are best for your health. There are many people who swear by this diet, and claim that it has saved their lives.

What is The Blood Type Diet?
The blood type diet, also known as the blood group diet, was popularized by a naturopathic physician called Dr. Peter D’Adamo in the year 1996. His book, Eat Right 4 Your Type, was incredibly successful. It was a New York Times bestseller, sold millions of copies, and is still wildly popular today. In this book, he claims that the optimal diet for any one individual depends on the person’s ABO blood type.
He claims that each blood type represents genetic traits of our ancestors, including which diet they evolved to thrive on.

This is how each blood type is supposed to eat:

Type A: Called the agrarian, or cultivator. People who are type A should eat a diet rich in plants, and completely free of “toxic” red meat. This closely resembles a vegetarian diet.
Type B: Called the nomad. These people can eat plants and most meats (except chicken and pork), and can also eat some dairy. However, they should avoid wheat, corn, lentils, tomatoes and a few other foods.
Type AB: Called the enigma. Described as a mix between types A and B. Foods to eat include seafood, tofu, dairy, beans and grains. They should avoid kidney beans, corn, beef and chicken.
Type O: Called the hunter. This is a high-protein diet based largely on meat, fish, poultry, certain fruits and vegetables, but limited in grains, legumes and dairy. It closely resembles the paleo diet.

24 replies

rhett t
rhett t 2015-02-19 09:19:21 -0600 Report

Going to have to try this diet. I am type o. I like food for the type o. thanks for posting this.

Refined Ruffian
Refined Ruffian 2015-02-20 08:08:42 -0600 Report

Let us know how you feel on this diet. It is very similar to the Paleo principles. I have not been able to make that plunge yet, I still like my whole grains. But it would be interesting to read your opinion if you do try it.

jayabee52 2015-02-18 10:36:48 -0600 Report

Howdy Dee

When my 2nd wife "Jem" was alive, we took in a friend's daughter who was having difficulty with her father. The daughter was on this "diet" although I don't remember now what her blood type happened to be. I never paid a lot of attention to it, She was still there when Jem passed away and daughter felt that she needed to move out under the circumstances. eventually she moved away to somewhere in the carolinas to find work.


suecsdy 2015-02-18 07:12:37 -0600 Report

I am A+ and have never in my life been a vegetarian nor ever had the desire to be. And while I may have to limit my consumption, I still enjoy a piece of "toxic red meat", medium rare please.

RebDee 2015-02-18 11:46:50 -0600 Report

I can't wait until the surgeon says it is ok for me to have red meat medium rare. Until then I dream of going to Red's Bar-B-Que in Simi, CA for beef ribs. I think I can still taste them (last time I had them was July 2014). My girlfriends have offered to go with me and share my plate since the plate comes with 7 ribs, 2 sides, bread, and a drink. YUM.

Jan8 2015-02-17 09:22:19 -0600 Report

Thanks rebDee ! Had the book. Never read it just skimmed it. You never know until you try it.

BB42 2015-02-17 08:35:00 -0600 Report

Just finished a great book called the Big Fat Lie. Tells a lot about nutrition type research. I'd have to read the book but I am somewhat dubious about what it claims.

RosalieM 2015-02-18 15:14:36 -0600 Report

You don't need to be dubious about that book. It is accurate. What is unbelievable is that we all accepted the Big Fat Lie about fat. I think that that lie is a lot to blame for the diabetic epidemic we are involved in. I bought into it when the American Heart Association preached "don't eat fat eat carbs". "Don't eat butter eat margarine" (trans fats) I gained 55 lbs and became diabetic trying to adhere to their low fat, high carb, healthy lifestyle. The truth is the American Heart Association and American diabetes Association did no research. They concluded that clogged arteries was caused by cholesterol
which is true, but they assumed that the cholesterol was caused by saturated fat when in reality it was caused by trans fats (fake fat) margarine and processed foods and triglycerides (caused by carbohydrates).
Now I do just the opposite, eat lots of saturated fat and few carbohydrates. I can keep my weight and blood sugar down.

Refined Ruffian
Refined Ruffian 2015-02-17 09:10:36 -0600 Report

I have not heard of this book. I just read a review and an interview with the author. it looks very interesting. I might put this book on the list.

Refined Ruffian
Refined Ruffian 2015-02-17 07:55:34 -0600 Report

I find the blood type diet at the least a bit interesting.

I usually reserve my opinion of forum users making difinitive statements regarding the scientific evidence of this or that (or lack thereof), but it is important to note that often scientific evidence does not exist because that level of scientific study has not yet been done for a particular area of study.

With what extremely limited reading I have done in the area of anthropological biology I do find the idea compelling of one's blood type being based upon ancestry, and therefore regional. One's regional ancestry would most certainly have dictated what diets people in those areas evolved to eat. An extreme case would be the Inuit tribes. A diet based almost wholey on meat, fat, and blood. How are they not extinct? Would such a diet be healthy for all of us? Anecdotal, certainly, but compelling nonetheless.

I am not suggesting that the blood type diet is legitimate, but I would not be so quick to dismiss it either. Certainly we have evolved farther than our ancestors to a more complex diet. That evolution of diet , though, is also obviously part of modern health problems (we are living proof of that right here on this forum).

I am Type O Negative. The Type O diet (or Paleo Diet) DOES work best for me. I feel my best and perform my best when I closely follow that lifestyle. But I love grains, legumes, and dairy, so fat chance I can follow it religiously. Still, it provides me with a goal that I aim for.

Science is constantly evolving with new information, new studies, new evidence. The Blood Type Diet does not have a slew of scientific studies to back it up, and I would not suggest using it as a primary guide. We here are diebetic, and what is and is not healthy for us is very clear. But I would not be so quick to dismiss the Blood Type guidelines in the future.

Jibber Jabber
Jibber Jabber 2015-02-18 11:42:12 -0600 Report

You are sooooo correct about not assuming something does not work because there is no scientific evidence ..How can scientific evidence exist when things have not been adequately studied..????…I am also type O negative..and I am very sure that if I had followed a paleo diet I would of never developed diabetes…is that because I am type O negative or because it just doesn't allow for the large amounts of refined sugar I was ingesting for decades…I will never know…could anyone of any blood type eating paleo avoid diabetes????…again I don't know..but I do no it doesn't allow for processed foods or refined sugars…and eating large quantities of those foods is a root cause for many developing type 2… This is why I also have a problem with much of the Dr. Oz bashing..(OOOoooo she likes Doctor Oz)…I do not take anything the man says as gospel truth…but he does get me thinking…and questioning…and sure many of the things he speaks about are not backed by science..but there was a time when the earth being a sphere was not backed by science…and just because one approach doesn't work for all…doesn't mean it doesn't work for some..the human body is far too complicated for blanket statements about anything…I would personally love to know why diabetic A can eat fruit and still maintain a normal enough BG reading to remain medication free…while my blood sugar soars when I think about an apple…

RosalieM 2015-02-18 15:49:59 -0600 Report

Hi Jibber,
I am not sure this is true in your case with the apple (I am learning to not write so dogmatic)however the apple contains fructose as it's sugar. Unlike other sugars fructose clears through the liver. It takes a lot longer, up to 2 hours before fructose raises your blood sugar. Sugar and starch on the other hand raise your blood sugar in as little as fifteen minutes. So it may not be the apple that raised your blood sugar, but the apple and what ever else you ate within two hours of the apple.
Here is how you can test it. First thing in the morning while still
fasting test your blood, eat an apple, test your blood about every half hour and record it. When you blood sugar gets at it's peak and starts to fall, that is how long it took for the fructose to clear the liver. It is important to sit still as on the computer during the testing time so as to not complicate the test with exercise as it will affect your test results. I did this test with a banana and one peach, 15 grams of fructose. It took two hours for my blood sugar to peak and start to decline. Oh yes do not eat anything
else until the test is complete.

Jibber Jabber
Jibber Jabber 2015-02-18 21:56:39 -0600 Report

If all I ate was an was the apple that raised my BG levels…and why in God's name would I want to eat an apple if I am keto…I monitor myself very closely I am fully aware of what raises my blood glucose levels …why and how…GOD…I just cant take this attitude anymore..I don't need to be schooled on how MY BODY reacts to anything…thank you..have a good evening…

RebDee 2015-02-20 04:27:46 -0600 Report

Occasionally, I use an apple with a spoonful of Jif creamy peanut butter as a snack. I thought it might be interesting to learn how long the apple takes to peak and tried Rosalie's method. She was right on the head that it took 2 hours. Not that I will change my routine, but I did find it interesting.

Jibber Jabber
Jibber Jabber 2015-02-20 17:51:42 -0600 Report

I always test two hours post meal…when I found out the apple spiked me it was a test to see how I would react to the apple..This was way back in my pre-keto days…and when I do these experiments I tend not only to test at the two hour mark…but every 15 minutes for THREE..not two hours…I actually keep a spread sheet because I want to compare my reaction now to the reactions from eating the same things a few years from now to check for improved insulin sensitivity…I know perfectly well what spikes me and why…I am sure you spiked at 2 hours…as I did…but you see all I ate was the apple…and I don't tolerate spikes…my BG is consistently between 90 and 122..for weeks comes from fine tuning my diet..from my own personal experiences..I don't like being told what spikes me and what doesn't and why..there are people here that can eat whole wheat toast and oatmeal and not spike as high as I do from an apple…or at least as high as I did back when I did the test..

haoleboy 2015-02-16 13:43:39 -0600 Report

Did you read the full review?
It says there is no scientific evidence that the diets work for the reasons it claims but that if they do work it may be due to the fact they emphasise eating healthy foods and eliminating processed foods (is that ever a bad idea?).
Nothing wrong with the diets as long as you limit carbs … just don't expect amazing results because your diet is somehow matched to your blood type.


RebDee 2015-02-16 16:27:32 -0600 Report

Thanks Steve but my diet is definitely NOT linked to my blood type as I eat mostly chicken and no meat and the diet is just the opposite.

haoleboy 2015-02-16 16:52:46 -0600 Report

Based on the success you have had I would venture to say you are on the right track Dee … keep at it.
(I have no clue what my blood type is so I wouldn't know which one was "right" for me … guess I should get my blood typed some day, huh?)


RebDee 2015-02-17 11:26:14 -0600 Report

When you get blood tests for A1c, perhaps you could ask the doctor to also prescribe for a blood test to see what you are.

GabbyPA 2015-02-16 13:14:27 -0600 Report

I have read on this before and I think it's part of why things work differently for different people. Our body's PH and all kinds of things give each of us some different requirements. I have never tried eating to my blood type, mostly because I don't know it. (I know, shame on me) But there are legitimate reasons why some people can eat foods that others cannot. It might not be due to our blood types, but I imagine there is some truth to how it works.

As for them not being scientifically proven. There are many things in this world that are not, but it doesn't negate the fact that they can work for some. Every theory or hypothesis starts out unproven. I do not discount things just because of that stage of research. If they prove they do not work, then that is different.

Chuck Fisher
Chuck Fisher 2015-02-16 13:02:03 -0600 Report

You can do a search and find various critiques of "blood type diets". You'll find that the consensus among dietitians, physicians, and scientists is that these diets are unsupported by scientific evidence.

RebDee 2015-02-16 12:46:14 -0600 Report

I personally am Type B and do not eat the way that this diet has registered the Type B to eat. What do you think, DC friends?

RosalieM 2015-02-16 16:18:24 -0600 Report

Think about it this way.
Did our ancestors know about a blood type diet? No they did not, but they they survived.

RebDee 2015-02-16 16:29:23 -0600 Report

I wouldn't want to eat as my ancestors did. Lots of fatty foods, starches and sugar and clean your plate so that the children in Europe won't starve. I certainly can't eat like that anymore.